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Friday, December 31, 2010

Lil'Gal's all night therapy

First Off, Happy New Year's EVE!  I hope everyone has great plans or at least feels blessed and optimistic going into yet, another new year.

Most of y'all who have followed my blog long enough or know me IRL are aware that Lil'Gal has had urinary issues since she was a toddler.  She had a level four urinary reflux which was corrected with surgery (Deflux Injection).

However, she also has a spastic bladder.  This is partly due to the reflux and the fact that her bladder could never expel all the urine.  Both of these were cause for her to have multiple severe bladder infections and run unbreakable fevers of 104 and 105.

So, there is a little history.  Since all that has been managed (surgery and ditropan for the bladder spasms) things have gone pretty well although even at seven-and-a-half years old she still has the occasional leakage.  Also, we have to be very aware of her fiber intake because the medication can (and does) cause constipation = further exacerbating the bladder irritation.

RECENTLY:  The past several weeks we have gone to therapy and learned ways to build her pelvic floor muscles.  This also involves 'retraining' all of those muscles because over the years (especially, before her surgery) her body and mind got confused because no matter what muscles it/they used it didn' seem to hold her urine for her.  We do exercised nightly (I won't go into detail).  But, it is just odd and amazing at how the littlest things affect the body.

NOW:  We are into phase two of her therapy.  Lucky for me, it came over the holiday break.  After she goes to bed (having pottied first) I have to check her each hour to see if her pull-up is dry.  FYI, she only wears the pull-up at night.  The medicine and her own self control have the days worked out although sometimes she can't hold it for very long and has to run for the restroom.

The idea is to see when she actually 'goes' during the night.  And, once we figure that out then we wake her slightly - just enough for her to walk herself to the restroom - and have her empty her bladder.  So, once we figure out when she goes (getting close) then we only have to wake up that once 30 minutes before she usually wets.

This is training both her mental alertness to look for signs AND helps her bladder to relax and hold more urine.  Yes, bladder relax.  Because the sphincter muscle is supposed to kick in and hold the urine.  The bladder is only supposed to contract when expelling the urine.

Additionally, the more we can get the bladder to relax and her other muscles to take over where they should, then she will be able to expel ALL the urine, thus preventing infections, etc.  As it is, she can't fully expel all the urine even if it feels to her like she has.  And, she always has a cell count showing some bacteria in her urine but luckily it has been a long time since we had a bladder infection.

So, we are getting close.  This is all so odd and yet a little fascinating and I'm optimistic that it is all working.  Hopefully, soon Lil'Gal will be able to outgrow the need for a pull-up at night and not have to worry about leakage.

The odd thing is that with all of this, Farmer, Jr. has the bladder the size of a milk jug.  That boy can go all night with drinking water through the night, wake up the next morning, watch Tom & Jerry and eat breakfast before he decides "I gotta' go."  When he does 'go', he floods.... LOL!

Maybe that was TMI.  These things just cross my mind.

Happy New Year's! See/read y'all in 2011!!


Tuesday, December 21, 2010

These Old Jeans | Quazen

Today's content. Well, yesterday's. But it was published today. Ever have a pair of jeans that fit like an old favorite T-Shirt? Well, this is my story.
Pop over if you want to read; I appreciate the traffic! (I get paid by the traffic!)
Happy Tuesday!!!! Sweet Peaches and Cream it is a fabulous day!
A little about comfort clothes, These Old Jeans | Quazen


Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Satin Sheets

Satin Sheets to lie on. Satin Sheets to slide on. That's the problem with Satin Sheets. They are cool, and smooth and comfortable. But, they slide off the bed during the night.

This isn't that big of a deal for me. I simply reach down and pull up whatever I can reach then tucking myself back into slumber. Hubby on the other hand takes serious issue with this. The other night he got out of bed and began re-tucking his side. After climbing back in and wriggling around he decided not good enough and again, got out of bed only to turn on a light this time.

I grunted, which translated into, "Turn the D@MN light off." "Oh," he mumbled and turned that light off; seconds later the bathroom light went on but he was kind enough to pull the door. Again, he starts tussling the bed covers and trying to re-make it. The third time I growled and exited the room with pillow in tow. I found the couch.

The next morning I discovered that he had pretty much made up the bed with 'my' side of the sheets and covers, LOL!  No wonder they wouldn't stay in place!

In other news, two more days of school for the kiddos! Yippeeee! Well, actually one more day - tomorrow - and a literature test for both. Friday is half day and the whole half is their party. After that, we be on holiday baby! I'm going to stay up lAAAAAAAte and read by the Christmas tree! I've got several good sequels that I want to read to find out the ending of several series. But, first I have to finish my sexy kindle-smut book about one of Santa's hawtie sons! >;-D

Have to final proof my writing assignment and then I can turn it in on Friday afternoon and I'm fweeeeeeeee!!!

Farmer, Jr. will spend his holiday working with his Dad on his 4-H shop project. That'll be a fun experience. And, we'll practice his baking project (Southern Living Italian Cream Cake; though, I might put a spin on it). And, then we have the bwunnies! Finally, they are eating. They had food and water but wouldn't touch it. Turns out, they don't know how to access their water from the dispenser. TOTALLY WEIRD!

FW finally figured this out. I felt awful; they were super dehydrated and so thirsty. It had been three days... It was thought that they were just a little uncomfortable still after the travel, the validation process and the new location/home. Poor, poor bwunnies. But now? They have been eating and drinking non-stop!

Lil'Gal will spend her holiday hounding me to entertain her, Ha! Ha!

So with this little song, I'm off to weigh the bwunnies. Hoping they made up overnight what they'd lost the past few days!!

Happy Hump-Diggity Day! Whoop! Day before the day before FWFD of the WEEEEEEEEEK!!!!!


Saturday, December 11, 2010

Silly Wabbits!

The rabbits are here! Aren't they adorable?

Dontcha' just wanna' hug'em, and squeeze'em, and pet'em, and kiss'em and snuggle'em all up?

I must say, this year was a little touch and go for a day or two.  Some of the breeders in Texas lost their rabbits due to the summer's heat and other causes.  So, with the influx of 4-H'ers choosing rabbits as their animal project and the shortage of bunnies it was a bit of a race (and LOTS of phone calls) to be sure to get a pen of four.

We have some great friends though, and they were determined to get Farmer, Jr. a pen of rabbits.  Hubby got on the phone with another friend and my BIL and SIL jumped on the line and in the end we got a pen of four from Port Lavaca.  :-D

They are a little small for this time of year.  As of this morning they are about a pound under where they are supposed to be.  By the day of the show they need to be at five pounds.  So, we're feedin'em up good and letting them slumber all they want.  They are SO super-uber adorable!!!

Today was check in and validation.  This is where they mark your rabbits to keep ya' honest for the show.  A pen of three rabbits are submitted to the show; the fourth is a spare so the best three of the four can be submitted.  The fourth (left-over) can be submitted into another category called 'Fryer'.  [I know. Harsh, huh? :-((  Don't tell Lil'Gal...]  If Farmer, Jr's don't place then they'll come back home with us after the show and we can hug'em, and pet'em, and snuggle'em and all that all we want.

If they DO place, then they get entered into the auction.  This is our first year but so far this is the just of my understanding as to how it works.  I'm super excited!  About as excited as the kids.  Even though Lil'Gal can't enter until next year (students have to be in third grade) she can still participate with us and the rabbits, and the baking project.

Anyhow, there were lots and lots of rabbits at check-in/validation this morning.  There are 429 entries this year at a minimum of four rabbits per entry.  That's a LOT of rabbits!  Some students had pens of five, six and eight.  All white with black ears and red eyes. All uber-soft and adorable.

 I have no clue how many chickens, turkeys, goats, sheep, pigs, cows, etc are also entered this year.

Farmer, Jr. has to keep a little diary type journal about the process.  This too will be fun.  What a learning experience!

On a side note, last night I had the Moms and Gals out for my 'General Mills Snack Mix Party'.  It was a hoot!  Everyone had a great time and snacked and ate and imbibed on a little wine and such.  And, of course, we watched Eclipse and had lots of paranormal discussions and book talk!  I'll be posting about that and some recipes a little later.

But, first I have the kitchen, Santa letters to email, and a writing assignment to work on.  Me and WonderMom are making wreaths for the School Christmas party, 26 all together. Hubby and I also have a party to attend tonight (Sweet D and Uncle J are keeping the kids for us, THX Y'all!)   AND, I haven't published any content in weeks at Triond so my earnings this month were a hand count of pennies.  My bad.

But, life is good!  Who can't be happy and wearing a smile when there are bunny-wabbits awound?

Happy Saturday!


Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Santa Baby!

I've been listening to Christmas music on Pandora while cleaning (overhauling and purging) the kids rooms, baths and the rest of the house. On a side note, one of my speakers Daddy got me for my LT for my birthday a couple years ago is going out. Wonder if it is too late to put those on my Christmas list?

Friday I have the Gals coming out for a General Mills hosted snack event = FREE snacks! And then my Twilight Moms/Gals are staying afterwards to watch ECLIPSE!! Sweeeeet! Totally.... And, Hubby and I have a Christmas party Saturday (pending a sitter) which is Sweeeet/Totally Doubled! ;-)

The hard part will be keeping the house shining over the next two days with young children running amuck. I thought about banning them from their rooms. Would that be bad Mommying? "No, you can't play/read/sleep in your room because you'll mess it up before my friends come.  Make a pallet, sleep in the hall.  The attic is always nice this time of year..." Yeah, guess I'll just have to suck it up and wrap them in gloves and lint roller tape.

I have some Christmas gift wrapping to do today too, which also goes well with Christmas music. There are a few things I still need so I thought, I'd ask Dear Santa.

"Santa Baby,

Please send me an elf to keep my house tidy and the gremlins in check
I would like a new set of speakers for my LT so I can blast music through the whole house while I clean and jam
I've been an awfully good girl, so please help me get through these next two school weeks until Christmas break
Help me get my writing assignment done by December 17th (I realize this is a pre-Christmas task but it doesn't hurt to ask)
I already have a house and a chariot, but I could use a stand-alone mixer ;-)
I've been okay, not totally but at least I tried an angel all year so send me some holiday cheer - with beer!

Thank you Santa,


P.S. I'll leave some corn out for Rudolph and his boys
P.P.S. I'll leave you an ice cold Shiner and some peanuts; I know all that milk and cookies gets old"

WAIT!  Before you click through to the next page, give this a listen.  It'll brighten your holiday Wednesday mood :-D


Monday, December 6, 2010

Lil'Gal, Lil'Gal, let down your hair....

Lil'Gal has long, blond hair. Really looong. Blond locks that sway down to her waist. And, she loves them.  As do I.  As does her Daddy.

But, she HATES to have those lovely locks brushed. It is a fight almost every morning that I have finally come to win if I actually brush her hair once we get to class while she is tending to her backpack, etc.

And, as pretty as it is? To put it up? In braids? Styled? No. Ne, ne, she says. "I like it down wild and free!"

I say, "You look like a hasbeen, like a ragamuffin... Tacky."

To which she flips her hair in answer and shares, "I prefer RAG-A-muffin."

To which we both, "HMFPFT!"

Oh, sure I've argued with her about how if she doesn't take care of it, or at least let me, I'll cut it all off. After all, a girl who won't care for her beautiful hair doesn't deserve those locks -- does she?

But, secret out... As tempted for the life lesson to do so, I know I never will. Because, I love her golden locks as much as she does. And, I'm pretty sure her Grandpa (my Daddy) would put me over his knee for having done so. Regardless of the lesson I was teaching. LOL!

We've read stories together about ladies and heroines and how they all have pretty hair but they also take care of it. Alas, no win. I'm lucky to get a clip to keep it out of her eyes; and, the occasional pony-tail because the manufacturer's warning on the go-cart requires it.

Then..... [notice my fascination with ellipses?  I use them all... the... time.  And, incorrectly.]

ALONG CAME Tangled. [Something I've dealt with personally and daily, hands-stuck-in-hair]. The new and improved Rapunzel movie by Disney.   A power-pack of a movie for both children and adults alike, I must say myself.  And, ooooh the things she can do with her hair! And, oh how magical it is! And, [I made sure to mention to Lil'Gal] how she (Rapunzel) must brush it daily to care for it....

[They had lots of good hair brushing examples in the film; you know... all those feet and yards.  This made FW very happy!]

So, whadda'ya'know! All it took was a multi-million dollar Disney movie -- which topped the final Harry Potter movie release, I might add -- to get a Lil'Gal to care more for her hair.

She brushes it. She asks me to brush it. She requests a pony-tail WITH a ribbon! [Super-Squee!] She wants braids, and waves for the morning.  And, now she wants me to help shampoo it and help condition it.

She wants, Rapunzel hair.

And, I'm doing everything in my power to give it to her!

Thank you Disney, for giving me just what we needed.  If Rapunzel can control her long golden locks, why, so can we.   Not that the 'me' in the 'we' couldn't before, but now the 'she' in the 'we' is actually participating!


Happy Tuesday!


Wednesday, December 1, 2010

5 Tips to Overcoming Bullying (Guest Post)

This is a guest post from Macheru Njaga, author of Patch, a young adult novel loosely based on his personal experiences with teen bullying.  His book is an effort to encourage discussion among teachers, parents and students.

Bullying has become such an eminent problem that when offered the opportunity to share this article, I felt obliged.  I was on the underhand of bullying as a young child.  I think about my own children as they are making their way in life and I consider myself an advocate against such abuse.

Let’s Address the Real Problem: 5 tips to overcoming bullying

By Mucheru Njaga
Author of Patch
858 words

I was a bully.

I didn’t plan on being one. In fact, before then, I was the victim of bullying. As a freshman in an all-boys boarding school, I, along with all of the junior students, served every command of the "prefects,” the senior leader students. They ruled our school with a heavy hand and had more power than the teachers. They bullied us physically; once I had to jump on my knees. Another time, they took away our privilege to wear pants so that we had to walk around in our boxers. Verbal humiliation was an everyday occurrence as well.

Four years later, I became a “prefect,” a bully and a part of a system I once despised. We would raid the freshman sleeping area in the middle of the night and make them follow whatever we ordered them to do at 2 a.m.—or face a worse punishment. We called them names in front of others in the cafeteria. We made sure to tackle them harder than necessary during rugby practice.

All of this was acceptable— condoned by the school faculty at the time because the "prefects" were seen as the mentors and guardians of the young students.

Today, the danger of bullying and its impact on our society is finally shaking people awake. Many groups and organizations have made significant steps in our fight against bullying, but there continues to be a growing number of bullying related deaths and suicides in America.

So where is the disconnect? Why are we letting this happen? Where does bullying start?

In our efforts to address this growing problem, we tend to focus more on the end result of bullying rather than where and why it starts. The kids we recognize as bullies and vilify as the aggressors could easily be our very own children or next door neighbor. In other words, for every victim, there is a perpetrator, and I set out to find out what transforms a lovable kid or teen into a bully. For the last couple of years, I compiled case studies that I believe could be a catalyst in our bid to stomp out bullying.

Throughout my entire experience, I noticed the common motivation behind bullying is fear. As a victim, I was afraid to fight for what I knew was right, and as a bully, I feared losing the tight grip of power I held. It is this fear that keeps things at status quo and continues the cycle.

This same basic principle plays out in today’s schools. Bullying is almost always a direct or indirect byproduct of "fear." Fear of being labeled. Fear of being uncool. Fear of being seen as weak. Most if not all instances of bullying are rooted in some sort of fear. Sadly, it is this fear that prevents kids from living a free life, where they are free to be different, to be gay, to love a certain kind of music or activity, to be themselves.

So, how does true, progressive change take place?

1. Define bullying with your kids and talk it out. For teens, public perception has substantial influence in their daily decisions. We need to clearly explain to kids what bullying is, how to spot bullying tendencies within themselves and how to avoid acting them out.

2. Take away the cool factor. Show kids that bullying stems from fear, and we could effectively render bullying as an "uncool" deed. In the largely successful anti-smoking "Truth" campaign and the anti-drug "Rise Above the Influence” campaign, ads rendering smoking and drug abuse as “uncool” helped to significantly reduce those habits among young people. A well-executed marketing campaign endorsed by popular teen celebrities that showcases bullying as an unacceptable act can help garner attention for the cause.

3. Be aware of tendencies toward bullying developing in kids. Educators, parents and children alike must be able to recognize the signs and symptoms of bullying before the problem gets out of hand. If there is a widespread understanding that fear is the underlying emotion and perpetuator of the bullying cycle, those who observe a child exhibiting signs of fear and insecurity can spot a potential problem early on and raise concerns.

4. Encourage self-reflection. Talk with children who are bullying others and encourage them to consider their behaviors. Often, another problem is bubbling beneath the surface, and it is necessary to determine the root of the behavior in order to fix it. Since this self-examination can prevent those problems from manifesting into something more harmful, the earlier it takes place the better.

5. Promote open communication about bullying problems. We have to change the way kids view talking to adults and authority figures about bullying issues. Kids are often worried about “snitching” and have a negative perception of telling adults when they’re having these types of problems. We must convince them that it is courageous, brave and admirable to put an end to the situation instead of remaining silent.
Thank you to Mucheru Njaga for sharing his article on my blog.  Thank you also to Megan Renart at Phenix & Phenix Literary Publicists for sharing information and wonderful books with me.  Allowing me to share with all of you.

Oh, and be looking forward to my review of Patch coming soon!

Happy Wednesday!